Oliver took a swipe at the wrestling giants during HBO’s Last Week Tonight show as well as its Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon over the way his employees are contracted.
The British talkshow host touched on the disturbing trend of early deaths among wrestlers and shared some “astonishing clauses” of what he claimed are copies of WWE superstars’ contracts.
He reported that wrestlers aren’t technically full-time WWE employees as they’re considered “independent contractors” despite signing exclusive deals with McMahon’s promotion.
Oliver added that there is no off season for the stars to recuperate and that the promotion can terminate a contract if a wrestler is sidelined by an injury for as little as six weeks.
John Oliver simply ignored the facts
Another alleged clause waives the WWE’s responsibility for injury or death of a performer even if it’s “caused by negligence of promoter”.
Oliver conceded that WWE have made some improvements in the past few years, such as banning chair shots to the head and the talent wellness program that now includes annual physical examinations.
But he said: “That’s just nothing.
“I have to take one of those every year to host this show and I’ve never once exploded through this table.”
WWE addressed Oliver’s statements by refuting everything he said and claiming that he ignored the facts.
The wrestling giants even invited him over to WrestleMania this Sunday at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey to learn more about the company.
A statement sent to Pro Wrestling Sheet read: “John Oliver is clearly a clever and humorous entertainer, however the subject matter covered in his WWE segment is no laughing matter.
“Prior to airing, WWE responded to his producers refuting every point in his one-sided presentation.
“John Oliver simply ignored the facts.
“The health and wellness of our performers is the single most important aspect of our business, and we have a comprehensive, longstanding Talent Wellness program.
“We invite John Oliver to attend WrestleMania this Sunday to learn more about our company.”
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